21:27 When the seven days were almost over, 1 the Jews from the province of Asia 2 who had seen him in the temple area 3 stirred up the whole crowd 4 and seized 5 him, 21:28 shouting, “Men of Israel, 6 help! This is the man who teaches everyone everywhere against our people, our law, 7 and this sanctuary! 8 Furthermore 9 he has brought Greeks into the inner courts of the temple 10 and made this holy place ritually unclean!” 11 21:29 (For they had seen Trophimus the Ephesian in the city with him previously, and 12 they assumed Paul had brought him into the inner temple courts.) 13 21:30 The whole city was stirred up, 14 and the people rushed together. 15 They seized 16 Paul and dragged him out of the temple courts, 17 and immediately the doors were shut. 21:31 While they were trying 18 to kill him, a report 19 was sent up 20 to the commanding officer 21 of the cohort 22 that all Jerusalem was in confusion. 23 21:32 He 24 immediately took 25 soldiers and centurions 26 and ran down to the crowd. 27 When they saw 28 the commanding officer 29 and the soldiers, they stopped beating 30 Paul. 21:33 Then the commanding officer 31 came up and arrested 32 him and ordered him to be tied up with two chains; 33 he 34 then asked who he was and what 35 he had done. 21:34 But some in the crowd shouted one thing, and others something else, 36 and when the commanding officer 37 was unable 38 to find out the truth 39 because of the disturbance, 40 he ordered Paul 41 to be brought into the barracks. 42 21:35 When he came to the steps, Paul 43 had to be carried 44 by the soldiers because of the violence 45 of the mob, 21:36 for a crowd of people 46 followed them, 47 screaming, “Away with him!” 21:37 As Paul was about to be brought into the barracks, 48 he said 49 to the commanding officer, 50 “May I say 51 something to you?” The officer 52 replied, 53 “Do you know Greek? 54 21:38 Then you’re not that Egyptian who started a rebellion 55 and led the four thousand men of the ‘Assassins’ 56 into the wilderness 57 some time ago?” 58 21:39 Paul answered, 59 “I am a Jew 60 from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of an important city. 61 Please 62 allow me to speak to the people.” 21:40 When the commanding officer 63 had given him permission, 64 Paul stood 65 on the steps and gestured 66 to the people with his hand. When they had become silent, 67 he addressed 68 them in Aramaic, 69
2 tn Grk “Asia”; in the NT this always refers to the Roman province of Asia, made up of about one-third of the west and southwest end of modern Asia Minor. Asia lay to the west of the region of Phrygia and Galatia. The words “the province of” are supplied to indicate to the modern reader that this does not refer to the continent of Asia.
sn Note how there is a sense of Paul being pursued from a distance. These Jews may well have been from Ephesus, since they recognized Trophimus the Ephesian (v. 29).
4 tn Or “threw the whole crowd into consternation.” L&N 25.221 has “συνέχεον πάντα τὸν ὄχλον ‘they threw the whole crowd into consternation’ Ac 21:27. It is also possible to render the expression in Ac 21:27 as ‘they stirred up the whole crowd.’”
5 tn Grk “and laid hands on.”
6 tn Or “Israelite men,” although this is less natural English. The Greek term here is ἀνήρ (anhr), which only exceptionally is used in a generic sense of both males and females. In this context, it is conceivable that this is a generic usage since “the whole crowd” is mentioned in v. 27, although it can also be argued that these remarks were addressed primarily to the men present, even if women were there.
7 sn The law refers to the law of Moses.
8 tn Grk “this place.”
9 tn BDAG 400 s.v. ἔτι 2.b has “ἔ. δὲ καί furthermore…al. ἔ. τε καί…Lk 14:26; Ac 21:28.” This is a continuation of the same sentence in Greek, but due to the length and complexity of the Greek sentence and the tendency of contemporary English to use shorter sentences, a new sentence was begun here in the translation.
10 tn Grk “into the temple.” The specific reference is to the Court of the Sons of Israel (see the note following the term “unclean” at the end of this verse). To avoid giving the modern reader the impression that they entered the temple building itself, the phrase “the inner courts of the temple” has been used in the translation.
11 tn Or “and has defiled this holy place.”
sn Has brought Greeks…unclean. Note how the issue is both religious and ethnic, showing a different attitude by the Jews. A Gentile was not permitted to enter the inner temple precincts (contrast Eph 2:11-22). According to Josephus (Ant. 15.11.5 [15.417]; J. W. 5.5.2 [5.193], cf. 5.5.6 [5.227]), the inner temple courts (the Court of the Women, the Court of the Sons of Israel, and the Court of the Priests) were raised slightly above the level of the Court of the Gentiles and were surrounded by a wall about 5 ft (1.5 m) high. Notices in both Greek and Latin (two of which have been discovered) warned that any Gentiles who ventured into the inner courts would be responsible for their own deaths. See also Philo, Embassy 31 (212). In m. Middot 2:3 this wall was called “soreq” and according to m. Sanhedrin 9:6 the stranger who trespassed beyond the soreq would die by the hand of God.
12 tn Grk “whom.”
sn This is a parenthetical note by the author. The note explains the cause of the charge and also notes that it was false.
14 tn On this term see BDAG 545 s.v. κινέω 2.b.
16 tn Grk “and seizing.” The participle ἐπιλαβόμενοι (epilabomenoi) has been translated as a finite verb due to requirements of contemporary English style. Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was begun in the translation, and καί (kai) has not been translated here.
18 tn Grk “seeking.”
19 tn Or “information” (originally concerning a crime; BDAG 1050 s.v. φάσις).
20 tn Grk “went up”; this verb is used because the report went up to the Antonia Fortress where the Roman garrison was stationed.
21 tn Grk “the chiliarch” (an officer in command of a thousand soldiers). In Greek the term χιλίαρχος (ciliarco") literally described the “commander of a thousand,” but it was used as the standard translation for the Latin tribunus militum or tribunus militare, the military tribune who commanded a cohort of 600 men.
22 sn A cohort was a Roman military unit of about 600 soldiers, one-tenth of a legion.
24 tn Grk “who.” Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence and the tendency of contemporary English to use shorter sentences, the relative pronoun (“who”) was translated as a pronoun (“he”) and a new sentence was begun here in the translation.
25 tn Grk “taking…ran down.” The participle κατέδραμεν (katedramen) has been translated as a finite verb due to requirements of contemporary English style.
27 tn Grk “to them”; the referent (the crowd) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
28 tn Grk “seeing.” The participle ἰδόντες (idonte") has been taken temporally.
30 sn The mob stopped beating Paul because they feared the Romans would arrest them for disturbing the peace and for mob violence. They would let the Roman officials take care of the matter from this point on.
32 tn Grk “seized.”
34 tn Grk “and he.” Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was begun in the translation, and καί (kai) has been replaced with a semicolon. “Then” has been supplied after “he” to clarify the logical sequence.
35 tn Grk “and what it is”; this has been simplified to “what.”
37 tn Grk “he”; the referent (the commanding officer) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
38 tn This genitive absolute construction has been translated temporally; it could also be taken causally: “and since the commanding officer was unable to find out the truth.”
39 tn Or “find out what had happened”; Grk “the certainty” (BDAG 147 s.v. ἀσφαλής 2).
40 tn Or “clamor,” “uproar” (BDAG 458 s.v. θόρυβος).
41 tn Grk “him”; the referent (Paul) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
43 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Paul) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
44 sn Paul had to be carried. Note how the arrest really ended up protecting Paul. The crowd is portrayed as irrational at this point.
45 tn This refers to mob violence (BDAG 175 s.v. βία b).
47 tn The word “them” is not in the Greek text but is implied. Direct objects were often omitted in Greek when clear from the context, but must be supplied for the modern English reader.
49 tn Grk “says” (a historical present).
51 tn Grk “Is it permitted for me to say” (an idiom).
52 tn Grk “He”; the referent (the officer) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
53 tn Grk “said.”
54 sn “Do you know Greek?” Paul as an educated rabbi was bilingual. Paul’s request in Greek allowed the officer to recognize that Paul was not the violent insurrectionist he thought he had arrested (see following verse). The confusion of identities reveals the degree of confusion dominating these events.
56 tn Grk “of the Sicarii.”
sn The term ‘Assassins’ is found several times in the writings of Josephus (J. W. 2.13.3 [2.254-257]; Ant. 20.8.10 [20.186]). It was the name of the most fanatical group among the Jewish nationalists, very hostile to Rome, who did not hesitate to assassinate their political opponents. They were named Sicarii in Latin after their weapon of choice, the short dagger or sicarius which could be easily hidden under one’s clothing. In effect, the officer who arrested Paul had thought he was dealing with a terrorist.
57 tn Or “desert.”
58 tn Grk “before these days.”
59 tn Grk “said.”
60 tn Grk “a Jewish man.”
61 tn Grk “of a not insignificant city.” The double negative, common in Greek, is awkward in English and has been replaced by a corresponding positive expression (BDAG 142 s.v. ἄσημος 1).
62 tn Grk “I beg you.”
63 tn The referent (the commanding officer) has been supplied here in the translation for clarity.
64 tn Grk “Giving him permission.” The participle ἐπιτρέψαντος (epitreyanto") has been translated as a finite verb due to requirements of contemporary English style.
65 tn Grk “standing.” The participle ἑστώς (Jestws) has been translated as a finite verb due to requirements of contemporary English style.
66 tn Or “motioned.”
68 tn Or “spoke out to.” L&N 33.27 has “to address an audience, with possible emphasis upon loudness – ‘to address, to speak out to.’ πολλῆς δέ σιγῆς γενομένης προσεφώνησεν τῇ ᾿Εβραίδι διαλέκτῳ ‘when they were quiet, he addressed them in Hebrew’ Ac 21:40.”
69 tn Grk “in the Hebrew dialect, saying.” This refers to the Aramaic spoken in Palestine in the 1st century (BDAG 270 s.v. ῾Εβραΐς). The participle λέγων (legwn) is redundant in English and has not been translated.